By Cathy Shan (’23)
Writers Opinion: Hybrid Learning
From increasing unemployment rates to terrible losses, COVID-19 has undoubtedly caused many changes in everyone’s lives. However, one of the biggest challenges that COVID-19 has caused families is education. As many of you know, most schools around Michigan have been running on a hybrid system. For those unaware of the hybrid system, the hybrid system is where students will be placed in groups and to go back to school in-person for certain days in a week. Take IA for example; students who choose to participate in hybrid classes get split up into two groups: the Silver Group or the Blue Group. The Silver Group goes to school in-person on Mondays and Tuesdays, while the Blue Group takes their classes virtually. On Thursdays and Fridays, the opposite is true; the Blue Group goes to school in-person while the Silver Group takes their classes virtually.
While hybrid learning definitely has many benefits, I’m here to tell you that we should go fully virtual for the time being. The biggest reason why hybrid learning is currently not the best option for learning is because of the likely increase in COVID-19 cases that will occur. According to Michigan.gov, there are and have been 86 schools (not including colleges) that currently have ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks. Even though there are fewer students in the building and IA has safety measures in the case that a person with COVID-19 has entered the school, it’s incredibly difficult to monitor every single student to make sure that they are properly distanced from each other, especially during passing time and dismissal. Furthermore, IA’s a small school, which means that students, whether regularly monitored for social distancing or not, will inevitably come into contact with each other. In the event that someone with COVID-19 enters the building, many students and faculty will be infected, due to the lack of social distancing in IA. Although hybrid learning can be extremely beneficial and helpful, it’s not the best form of education and learning, especially with the recent increase in COVID-19 cases. However, when COVID-19 cases start slowing down, IA can have hybrid learning that is safer and monitored more carefully. However, if hybrid learning will continue, despite the increase in cases, one suggestion is to have teachers stand in hallways to monitor social distancing. Another suggestion is to use a temperature gun to check every students’ temperature before they walk into the building instead of relying on them to do their own screenings at home. No matter if you decide to stay virtual or go hybrid, please social distance, wear your mask at all times, and stay safe.